How to compete with established brands online
Are you sceptical about being able to keep up with large, well-established brands that pop up everywhere online? Do you think it’s impossible to gain the exposure you need against your biggest competitors? Turns out, there is a lot you can do to compete with these industry giants. It just takes knowing who your competitors are, and what they are offering, to make your products, services, and marketing efforts stand out.
Have a look at these easy steps you can take to compete with established brands online.
1. Give your brand a personality.
As human beings we long for meaningful connections and like-minded relations. The same principles apply to your brand. Look into your target market and try to relate on a personal level. Give your brand a human element and express understanding to your potential customers. By demonstrating that you understand the need and share similar beliefs and values, your customers are most likely to turn to you for a solution.
2. Offer an alternative solution.
Businesses need to give customers a reason why they should choose their product or service over an established brand. The strongest ways to differentiate your brand could be through product innovation, providing a personalised service, or it could be other factors like convenience or a unique buying experience. Every big business you see today was once a start-up. Have certainty that the product or the service you are bringing to market, while not being well-known (at this moment), offers an alternative solution to the prevailing brand.
3. Start a blog.
Most online organisations know about the advantages of blogging. In case you’re burnt out on being disregarded on the web, and looking for a better approach to share thoughts and have your voice heard — getting involved in corporate blogging is a great place to start. You can write the content yourself and/or involve employees to regularly contribute. Many companies outsource writers to provide content. Caution: Be sure to concentrate on high quality content on your blog. Purely promotional text will drive readers away, while insightful, entertaining and educational content will attract them.
4. Become adaptable.
Since larger businesses often drive change within their industries, it’s important that your business is able to adapt to change quickly as well, so you can take advantage of new opportunities that arise. For example, your competition might start offering free shipping or returns. If customers get accustomed to that, then they might expect it from your business as well. And if you don’t offer it, they could see it as a disadvantage. Continuous adaptability is necessary as it keeps you advancing, innovating and moving in the right direction.
5. Focus on a narrow niche.
When you try to serve everyone, you serve no one. This is true with service-based businesses. Having a niche is vital on the grounds that it focuses on an unmistakable portion of the market. If you try to cater to everyone your overall marketing and message won’t speak to anyone. Once you are established in a niche, it becomes easier to spot other opportunities in adjacent industries, and to move to exploit them. It’s always easier to expand into areas that have something in common with your current business than to take a great leap into something completely different.
6. Take measured risks.
Whether we like it or not, risk is an integral part of life. Some people may view it as a challenge that may lead to improvement or success, while others see it as reckless activity. As a business owner, you have to be willing to take risks. Large corporations take risks on a regular basis, and while some of them may not pay off, many have proven to be highly successful. As people’s demands change over time, economic trends shift. This results in new business opportunities. Spotting the trend is the challenge, as well as its timing; the earlier, the better. Once you recognise the challenge, you need to act on it. If you want to see serious growth then you can’t wait for success to come to you, you have to go and find it, and this means confronting and embracing risks and using them to your advantage.
Standing out in a crowd of competitors is no easy task. Choose one or more of these methods to create an advantage for your venture. How many of these are part of your current branding strategy? Let us know in the comments below.